Valentine was asked before Monday’s game with the Miami Marlins if he had received a call from the commissioner’s office regarding his comments about the umpiring in Sunday’s loss to the Nationals. He said he hadn’t, but added, “I probably will, right? Isn’t that great when that happens? Then they fine you, take your money, reprimand you, as though I did something wrong. It’s great. It’s a great system. I love it.”
Valentine spent the next 10 minutes talking about umpiring. His basic argument: If hitters constantly swing and miss at balls they believe to be strikes, umpires can’t be expected to get all the calls right.
“My thought on that whole thing is this: From the time now that people pay hundreds if not thousands of dollars to teach their kids to play this great game of ours, the No. 1 thing they try to do is teach their pitchers to throw the ball over the plate. They teach their hitter to swing at strikes and take balls,” Valentine told reporters.
“When I did the Little League World Series, I thought it was the most criminal thing I ever saw. I wanted to cry when a kid in the sixth inning with the bases loaded and his team down by one run was called out on a strike three on a pitch that was six inches outside. He couldn’t reach it with his bat. I cried for him. And that kid is scarred for life playing our game by an injustice.
“And then someone says the most ridiculous words that I ever heard: ‘But we like the human factor.’ It’s criminal that we allow our game to scar a young person like that, and then it continues on. I think in 2012 it should not be part of the process.
Posted: June 11, 2012 at 09:45 PM | 49 comment(s)
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